Beat Deadlines: Your Very Own To-Do List Technique

Angelica B. Dilao
Published on
October 3, 2022

Deadlines can be a struggle. Students usually juggle different responsibilities in their home, school, and their community to the point where it can be overwhelming to track the work that they have to do. If you are interested in organizing, scheduling, and planning work with the use of a “to-do list,” then you have come to the right place. Despite having similar experiences of working on different sets of tasks, we all have our ways of mapping things out. Hence, it is undeniably important to be able to find a suitable to-do list technique that keeps you motivated and organized. Let’s dive into our 4 To-do List Techniques!

  1. Bullet Journaling

This is probably the most common and known “to-do list” technique used by students. In order to “perform” this technique, a person would have to list down the tasks they are being assigned as it comes. You can reorganize your tasks in different ways such as in terms of deadlines, importance, and categories. 

  1. Eisenhower Box 

This is a method that contains quadrants that hold specific situations or roles in it. It is divided based on the urgency and importance of a certain task. This technique lets you evaluate your assignments. If you find it difficult to assess and see which one you should do first due to its urgency and importance, this technique could be the right fit for you!

  1. Ivy Lee Method

In order to successfully use the Ivy Lee Method, you should immediately write down known tasks for the next day before the current day ends. Tasks that were not finished or done will be listed at the top of the list to help you see and decide which one you should prioritize first.

  1. Note Card Method

Using sticky notes or cards, write down each task or to-do and you can either randomly shuffle these cards or group them based on the urgency and priority of your work projects.

Additional tips to learn when creating your to-do lists:

  • Choose your preferred medium. 

What do you usually like to use when you are creating your to-do list? 

Are you more into using productivity apps or physically writing your tasks down using notebooks?

  • Add a specific date. 

Having an immediate plan for when you would like to do a certain task can help you balance your workload each day.

  • Break it down. 

If possible, break a huge project into smaller parts then reorganize it so that it can be done on separate yet consistent dates.

  • Update it regularly. 

Feel free to check off the tasks you have already accomplished, and add in new tasks that you remember or tasks that are assigned to you.

  • Take action and rest. 

Make sure that when creating your to-do list, put in the necessary work and actually do these tasks. Also, we must remember to not pressure ourselves into doing 20+ tasks in a day. Allow some time for yourself too!

If you are wondering if creating a to-do list can actually help manage the weight of your work, you should learn about the Pareto Principle. The Pareto Principle (80/20 rule) applied in to-do listing refers to 80% of the outcome being established by your 20% effort. By initially listing down the work that you need to do in a day, you are creating great progress through tracking and seeing what you must prioritize immediately. To-do lists are a helpful tool to see a concrete plan which lets us organize our priorities and set objectives. It may reduce the overwhelming weight of piled-up work which may not be explicitly obvious, but is undoubtedly present.

Now let’s get our pens, paper, phones, or laptops. Start listing your tasks with your preferred to-do list technique and beat the deadline.

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